At the start of the ODI series between India and Australia, no one would have thought that the last ODI at Delhi would be the series decider. More so, after India took a 2-0 lead after the first two matches.
Australia has shown tremendous fighting spirit to come back from a 2-0 deficit to level the series at Mohali. Now, the series moves to New Delhi for the decider with all to play for both the teams. In the absence of David Warner and Steve Smith, Australia has found new heroes in Peter Handscomb and Ashton Turner.
On the other hand, India was playing to their full strength barring Hardik Pandya. However, Vijay Shankar filled in the void quite admirably. But the one player that India would still miss badly at Delhi would be the unparalleled M.S. Dhoni.
It seems the time has now come for the Indian players and the fans to mentally prepare themselves to visualize an Indian team without the great MSD. Thankfully for India, he will be definitely around for the World Cup.
Coming back to the series on hand, the momentum is certainly with Australia after their back-to-back wins at Ranchi and Mohali. At the same time, India is no pushovers at home. The Indians have certain factors going in their favour. This article is about 5 such favourable factors for Team India.
# 5 The openers returning to form
The only positive for India at Mohali was the welcome return to form of both the Indian openers Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan. Dhawan who scored a total of 41 runs in his last 5 ODI innings, managed to score 143 delightful runs at Mohali. Dhawan’s form is crucial for India at Delhi and in England.
Compared to Dhawan, Rohit had aggregated 60 in his last 5 ODI innings before his innings of 95 at Mohali. The openers put on 193 runs which led India to a formidable score of 358. The only problem with the Indian openers was that of late they invariably failed while chasing.
The welcome return to form of the Indian openers augurs well for Team India in the decider at Delhi.